People who buy ERP Software usually spend most of their time evaluating features. The fact is, you should be spending most of your time evaluating your own business. The more you know about the problems you expect the new system to solve, the better informed your final choice will be. Know where in your accounting cycle you experience the biggest productivity losses and highest error rates. Determine how inaccuracies are affecting your business. Understand which tasks require automation. Begin by identifying the problems you experienced this year because your existing system wasn’t adequate.

1. Create a Task Force

ERP Software affects many departments within your organization. One of the easiest ways to ensure cooperation is to involve representatives from other departments right from the beginning—including not-so-obvious groups like Sales and Human Resources. It may slow down your process and frustrate you, especially if your old system is failing and you need to hurry the new project along. But in the long run, a task force saves time and hassles, and guarantees that other departments will cooperate during the implementation phase.

2. Aim High

Many people don’t aim high enough when they implement a new ERP Software system. Just about any product can deliver financial statements. You should be looking for much more. Think back to last year’s planning sessions with your peers. What information could have boosted productivity and profitability? This might include current gross profit by product, customer, or salesperson, or trends on how customers and products are growing or declining. You may want to use financial ratios to measure your company’s performance against your competitors.

3. Know What Is Unique About Your Company

Your company probably has some unique requirements that can’t be changed. Do you need to price product by warehouse location? Do you have multi-language or multi-currency needs? Does your industry have special reporting techniques? Make a list of requirements unique to your industry and organization.

4. What Features Can’t Live Without

When you survey your task force, you’ll uncover a few system capabilities that are critical to your company such as particular reports or tracking methodologies. Once you discover that they are absolutes, put them on your must-have feature list.

Click here for the last blog of this series: Steps for Purchasing an ERP Software System: #1